GOOD MORNING SIBLINGS!
Today’s readings are 2 Chronicles 25-27
Hippity Hop Rabbit Trail Time!
In today’s readings we begin with seeing a king that does what is right in the eyes of YHWH – with one caveat, we are told in 2 Chronicles 25:2 that he did not follow YHWH with a full heart. In other words, he was lukewarm.
What exactly is lukewarm? It is not just a midpoint between hot and cold, but a mixture of each. Many of us, myself included, have spent a lot of our walk being hot in some areas, all on fire for the Father, and cold in other areas, stiff-necked and determined to go our own way rather than walk in obedience. In our own minds, we tend to excuse the cold by telling ourselves that the hot makes up for it. In the eyes of the YHWH, the two blend together and make us lukewarm. The Father would actually prefer us to be cold over being lukewarm. Lukewarm makes Him vomit. It disgusts Him. He is a wholehearted God and we cannot serve Him by only allotting portions of our heart to loving Him. Remember, loving Him means obedience.
15 “‘I know your works: you are neither cold nor hot. Would that you were either cold or hot! 16 So, because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth. 17 For you say, I am rich, I have prospered, and I need nothing, not realizing that you are wretched, pitiable, poor, blind, and naked. 18 I counsel you to buy from me gold refined by fire, so that you may be rich, and white garments so that you may clothe yourself and the shame of your nakedness may not be seen, and salve to anoint your eyes, so that you may see. 19 Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline, so be zealous and repent.
In closing of this topic, I want to offer you something to think about: There is no such thing as a lukewarm follower of YHWH. Turn that over in your mind today.
In 2 Chronicles 25:5 we then see him (King Amaziah) gathering up an army. He found 300,000 men who were fit for war. In Jehoshaphat’s time, 50-60 years earlier, there were four times as many.
One commentary I read noted regarding this that “Sin weakens a people, diminishes them, dispirits them, and lessens their number.” ~Matthew Henry
Finding his own troops lacking in number, Amaziah hired troops from Israel. At the time, YHWH was not with Israel as they were still worshipping the golden calves. Think about this: Although these were/are the chosen people of YHWH’s, He was not with them because they were not being faithful to Him. That could be written just as easily of our time. Not only that, but seeking additional troops showed a lack of faith in YHWH. Amaziah had made this decision without consulting any prophets or considering the power of YHWH to deliver them in battle. Lukewarm folks tend to go back and forth, ultimately leaning on their own wisdom.
2 Chronicles 25:14!!! GASP That was quite a quick leap from doing right in the eyes of YHWH to this. A little leaven leavens the whole lump – and boy can that bread of sin rise fast!
We see a parallel account of 2 Chronicles 25:17… in 2 Kings 14:9-10
“But Joash king of Israel replied to Amaziah king of Judah: “A thistle in Lebanon sent a message to a cedar in Lebanon, ‘Give your daughter to my son in marriage.’ Then a wild beast in Lebanon came along and trampled the thistle underfoot. 10 You have indeed defeated Edom and now you are arrogant. Glory in your victory, but stay at home! Why ask for trouble and cause your own downfall and that of Judah also?”
2 Kings 14:9-10
In his reply, Joash lets Amaziah know that he finds his challenge to be foolish but, leaning on his own wisdom and arrogance, Amaziah persists and we read how this ends.
Sidenote to help with confusion: Be sure and reference our handy dandy kings chart here. You’ll see that there was, around this time, a king in Israel named Joash and a king in Judah named Joash. Their dynasties overlap just a bit. Keep that in mind when you see this name multiple times, if it appears to not make sense in the context, you may be reading of the other Joash.
Moving into chapter 26, recall that, just as in Kings, we are seeing in Chronicles that the Father judges each king based on whether or not their heart is wholly with Him and whether or not they do right in His eyes.
The meaning of doing right in the eyes of the father is the same yesterday, today, and forever. He is God, He does not change (Malachi 3:6). His love and His teachings and commandments are just as relevant today as they were a thousand years ago and as they will be a thousand years from now.
Uzziah’s Pride and the punishment of Tzaraat
Recall, as we’ve seen time and again, that leprosy is not an accurate translation of this affliction. The affliction is known as Tzaraat and it is an affliction brought about by YHWH as punishment for sin. It is (usually) temporary and can only be removed by YHWH.
In 2 Chronicles 27:2 We see Uzziah’s son begin to reign and we are told that he followed his father’s good examples, but did not imitate his bad behavior.
I love this statement: 2 Chronicles 27:6 “So Jotham became mighty, because he ordered his ways before YHWH his God.”
May we become mighty in the Father this day and may YHWH bless the reading of His Word!
Test everything, hold tight to what is good.~ 1 Thess 5:21
We are saved by Grace alone: Obedience is not the root of our salvation, it is the fruit!